Skip to main content

Full text of "The capture of Harper's Ferry"

See other formats





MmB. o 





Of H)E 

?2f nibersiitp of J^ortfj Carolina 

©hie; book toag presenteb 

3/pisio, ,(J.J).C . 


One of the most beautiful things I sew during the 
war was the capture of Harper's i'erry. ffe were somewhere on 
the lieryland side of the Potomac Itiver. One evening about 
a half sn hour by sun we received orders to prepare for an 
all night march. After spending v.hat seemed to us , Stonewall 
Jackson's men, a long time in one place, we were glad to move 
on. We had no idea where we were going, but they were Stone- 
wall Jackson's orders and we knew "Old Jack" was all right, 
so we set out and marched blindfolded as you might say, on, 
and on, and on, till we felt pretty sure it was close on to 
daybreak, when we were ordered to halt. After some arrange- 
ments by officers we were ordered to lie down. It was not 
long before we could see it was growing lighter in the East. 
There had been several days of cloudy, gloomy weather, but 
when the sun rose the clouds rolled away and everything fair- 
ly glittered. It will be remembered that Harper' s Jerry is 
in a valley on the Potomac, surrounded by hills. We were 
then ordered to lie down. The Yankees who were stationed 
there looked up and saw they were enatirely surrounded by the 
Confederates. They had Just received a large ouanity of fresh 
supplies from the Ilorth end were eating drinking and having 
a big carousal. /hen they looked up and took in the situation 
you ought to have seen the white flas-s shoot up, so we cap- 
tured twelve thousand five hundred prisioners without firing 
a gun. Stonewall , realizing, he could not get s sufficient 
force of his own men on the Virginia side to accomplish his 
object without being discovered, had arranged for General 
Longstreet to come to his support on the South side which he 

fK did. So between the two big generals they did a good nights 
Q work, but it was Stonewall Jackson's plan. Longstreet 's 
command being not far off, his men did not have so far to 

Digitized by the Internet Archive 
in 2013 

march as we, Stonewall's men did. 

Ve boys were turned loose on these good things 
end you may he sure we availed ourselves of them. One more 
time in our lives we ate as much sugar as we wanted. Owing 
to the lack of sufficient transportation, we were not able 
to take awey all those supplies which would have been so 
valuable to our army, but we bore off a good quantity, and 
were so refreshed and elated that we scarcely knew ourselves. 
I have read and heard various estimates of the number of 
prisioners captured on that memorable occasion. Some S8y eight 
thousand, some nine thousand, a nd so on but I don't think any 
of them ever reached ten thousand but there were twelve thou- 
sand five hundred prisoners besides a considerable quantity 
of military stores. 

Austin A. Jones Company 5. 7th Iforth Carolina 

Regiment . 

The account of the capture of Harper's Perry by 
Stonewall in sll the histories I have examined is so differ- 
ent from that given by "The men who were there" , that I wish 
to send for preservation this contribution from Mr, Austin 
A. Jones one of my neighbors whose word no one who knew him 
would doubt. He volunteered at the beginning of the war In 
what was known as the Cedat Pork Company of which Hiram Weather- 
spoon was Captain, 3nd served faithfully until the 3ettle of 
Fredericksburg where he lost a leg. .4s S0021 as possible he 
was brought home where he recovered and lived till s few years 
ago. His Company was composed of men from our neighboring 
village of llorrisville and old Cedar Pork Church, Bake County 
and was known as Company 0. 7th Regiment, North Carolina Troops. 
Edward 3rahsm Haywood of Raleigh, Lieutenant Colonel. 

Mrs. A. J. Ellis 

Raleigh, N. C. 
August 10th, 1928.